Great Lakes Loons
Founded in 1982
Midland, Michigan
Based in Midland since 2007
Minor league affiliations
ClassHigh-A (2021–present)
Previous classesClass A (1995–2020)
LeagueHigh-A Central (2021–present)
DivisionEast Division
Previous leagues
Midwest League (1995–2020)
Major league affiliations
TeamLos Angeles Dodgers (2007–present)
Previous teams
Minor league titles
League titles (2)
  • 2000
  • 2016
Team data
Name
MascotLou E. Loon (2007–present)
Rall E. Camel (2012–present)
Doodle the Eagle (2003–2006)
Rally Cat (1995–2002)
BallparkDow Diamond (2007–present)
Previous parks
Owner(s)/
Operator(s)
Michigan Baseball Foundation
General ManagerBrad Tammen[1]
ManagerAustin Chubb

The Great Lakes Loons are a Minor League Baseball of the High-A Central and the High-A affiliate of the Los Angeles Dodgers.[2] They are located in Midland, Michigan, and play their home games at Dow Diamond, which opened in April 2007. The Loons were members of the Midwest League from 1995 to 2020.

History

The Loons play at Dow Diamond in Midland, Michigan.
The Loons play at Dow Diamond in Midland, Michigan.

The Midwest League came to Battle Creek, in 1995 after the franchise formerly known as the Madison Hatters moved. The team was first known as the Battle Creek Golden Kazoos. Due to a trademark dispute and general fan dissatisfaction with the name (which is a nickname for the nearby city of Kalamazoo), the name was changed to the Michigan Battle Cats on March 9, 1995.

The team was affiliated with the Boston Red Sox (1995–98) and Houston Astros (1999–2002). The team changed its name to the Battle Creek Yankees after becoming an affiliate of the New York Yankees in 2003. The Tampa Bay Devil Rays took over affiliation of the team after the 2004 season, and the team name was changed to the Southwest Michigan Devil Rays.

In January 2006, the Devil Rays were sold to the non-profit Michigan Baseball Foundation and relocated to Midland, Michigan, in 2007. The team was renamed the Great Lakes Loons. A lack of interest from the Battle Creek community was the main reason for the move. Reduced ticket prices (even a night when fans were actually offered a dollar to come to that night's game) failed to pique the interest of local residents.

Naming rights for the Loons' stadium were purchased by Dow Chemical, which is headquartered in Midland. The company named the stadium "Dow Diamond." Ground was broken on the stadium on April 11, 2006, with construction taking 367 days to complete. In September 2006, the team announced its new affiliation with the Los Angeles Dodgers. In November 2006, the Loons named Lance Parrish as the team's first manager since the move to Michigan's Tri-City Area. The first home game was played on April 13, 2007.

After nine seasons in Midland, the Loons went through an overhaul of their logos and brand to give the franchise a fresh, updated look heading into its 10th season in 2016.[3]

On September 18, 2016, the Loons clinched their first Midwest League championship following a 9–8 victory over the Seattle Mariners-affiliated Clinton LumberKings.[4] The Loons won the championship series 3–1, following three-game series victories over the Bowling Green Hot Rods (Tampa Bay Rays) and West Michigan Whitecaps (Detroit Tigers) in the previous rounds. The Loons were managed by Gil Velazquez.

The Loons have hosted the Midwest League All-Star Game on two occasions (2008 and 2017).

On August 23, 2019, the Loons hosted their largest crowd ever of 6,671 people.[5]

In conjunction with Major League Baseball's restructuring of Minor League Baseball in 2021, the Loons were organized into the 12-team High-A Central.[6]

Year-by-year record

Michigan Battle Cats (1995–2002)
Year Record Finish Manager Playoffs
1995 75–62 4th DeMarlo Hale Lost League Finals
1996 60–78 11th Tom Barrett
1997 70–67 4th Billy Gardner, Jr. Lost in 1st round
1998 79–61 2nd (t) Billy Gardner, Jr. Lost in 1st round
1999 76–62 3rd Al Pedrique Lost in 1st round
2000 82–56 2nd Al Pedrique League Champs
2001 82–55 3rd John Massarelli Lost in 1st round
2002 79–61 4th John Massarelli Lost in 1st round
Battle Creek Yankees (2003–2004)
Year Record Finish Manager Playoffs
2003 73–64 3rd Mitch Seoane Lost in 2nd round
2004 71–68 9th Mitch Seoane (13–18) / Bill Mosiello (58–50)
Southwest Michigan Devil Rays (2005–2006)
Year Record Finish Manager Playoffs
2005 72–67 4th (t) Joe Szekely Lost in 1st round to SB
2006 62–77 12th Skeeter Barnes
Great Lakes Loons (2007–present)
Year Record Finish Manager Playoffs
2007 57–82 5th Lance Parrish
2008 54–85 6th Juan Bustabad
2009 81–59 2nd Juan Bustabad Lost in 2nd round to FW
2010 90–49 1st Juan Bustabad Lost in 2nd round to LC
2011 72–67 4th John Shoemaker
2012 67–73 6th John Shoemaker
2013 67–72 5th Razor Shines Lost in 1st round to SB
2014 66–73 4th Bill Haselman
2015 68–69 7th Luis Matos Lost in 1st round to LAN
2016 65–75 6th Gil Velazquez League Champions
2017 69–70 5th Jeremy Rodriguez
2018 60–77 6th John Shoemaker Lost in 1st round to WM
2019 58–79 4th John Shoemaker Lost in 2nd Round to SB

Mascot

Lou E. Loon is the team mascot and Ambassador of Fun for the team. He's an energetic bird who loves to dance at home games and make public appearances. The kids' play area at the diamond is named Lou E.'s Lookout in his honor. He often leads fans in his signature cheer, the "Funky Feather", which won "Best In-Game Promotion of the Year" in 2009 for Minor League Baseball.

"Rall E. Camel" was introduced as the team's second mascot in April 2012. He is an honorary deputy ambassador of mischief and is an ostensibly goofy addition to the staff of the Great Lakes Loons.

Roster

Players Coaches/Other

Pitchers

  • 29 Aldry Acosta
  • 40 Carlos Alejo
  • 30 Jeff Belge
  • 36 Logan Boyer
  •  1 Jacob Cantleberry
  • 27 Hyun-il Choi
  • 35 Franklin De La Paz
  • 51 Carlos Duran
  • 52 Braidyn Fink
  • 21 Alec Gamboa
  • 24 Jose Hernandez
  • 45 Michael Hobbs
  •  3 Antonio Knowles
  • 46 Jack Little
  • 41 Lael Lockhart
  • 50 Kevin Malisheski
  • 32 Mike Mokma
  • -- Juan Morillo
  • 97 Robinson Ortiz
  • 43 Cole Percival
  • 25 Jose Rodulfo
  • 50 Emmet Sheehan
  • 31 Julian Smith
  •  1 Gavin Stone
  • -- Mitchell Tyranski
  • 46 Cyrillo Watson

Catchers

  •  7 Chase Barbary
  •  5 Ryan January
  • 38 Carson Taylor

Infielders

  • 33 Zac Ching
  • 16 Brandon Lewis
  • 10 Deacon Liput
  •  8 Leonel Valera

Outfielders

  • 11 Jonny Deluca
  • 35 Sam McWilliams
  • 44 Andy Pages
  • 22 Andrew Shaps
  • 19 Joe Vranesh
  • 15 Ryan Ward


Manager

  • 28 Austin Chubb

Coaches


7-day injured list
* On Los Angeles Dodgers 40-man roster
~ Development list
# Rehab assignment
∞ Reserve list
‡ Restricted list
§ Suspended list
± Taxi squad
† Temporarily inactive list
Roster updated November 19,, 2021
Transactions
→ More rosters: MiLB • High-A Central
Los Angeles Dodgers minor league players

Notable Great Lakes Loons alumni

See also

Sources

References

  1. ^ "Brad Tammen Named Loons President and GM". Ballpark Digest. February 12, 2019. Retrieved February 12, 2019.
  2. ^ "Club Information". Great Lakes Loons. Minor League Baseball. Retrieved February 12, 2019.
  3. ^ "New Great Lake Loons logo evokes summertime in Michigan". Chris Creamer's SportsLogos.Net News and Blog : New Logos and New Uniforms news, photos, and rumours. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  4. ^ Stephen, Eric (2016-09-18). "Loons win 2016 Midwest League title". True Blue LA. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  5. ^ "Great Lakes Loons Set Single-Game Attendance Record". 26 August 2019.
  6. ^ Mayo, Jonathan (February 12, 2021). "MLB Announces New Minors Teams, Leagues". Major League Baseball. Retrieved February 12, 2021.
  7. ^ "Loons in the Majors".